— travel inspiration for small budgets and big dreams —

travel inspiration for small budgets and big dreams


♣ ♣ On the hills just above Florence lies the quiet comune of Fiesole. It is famous for its ruins, Roman and Etruscan; for Fra Angelico, who took his vows there as a friar of the Dominican Order; for Monte Ceceri, where Leonardo da Vinci conducted his flying experiments; and for unparalleled panoramic views of […]

The Last Medici

♥ ♥ The 18th of February marks the anniversary of the death of Anna Maria Luisa de Medici, the last of Florence’s ultra powerful Medici dynasty. She left the family’s entire art collection to Florence under the condition that none of it be ever taken out of the Tuscan capital and thus unwittingly ensured the city’s future through tourism. […]

Art at the Uffizi

♥ ♥ I’ll be happily plebeian till the day I die but I learned to appreciate art (and museums) more once I realized it was okay to approach them with less than total reverence. Before, there were paintings or sculptures that I just couldn’t bring myself to admire because, to be honest, they were downright […]

The Architectural Wonder That Started as a Group Project Gone Wrong

As group projects do.  ♥  ♥  As you probably know, the dome of the Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fiore — perhaps the most famous landmark in Florence — was built in the early 1400’s by Filippo Brunelleschi. What you may not know is that, apparently, there was an architectural design contest for the dome […]

Where to Stay in Florence: Hostel Gallo d’Oro

Clean, colorful, close enough to the center, buffet breakfast plus free snacks practically 24/7, all for €22 a day. You can do much worse than Hostel Gallo d’Oro. View this post on Instagram A post shared by SmallTownGirls MidnightTrains (@smalltowngirlsmidnighttrains) ♥ I’ll be honest and say outright that the deciding factor for my booking Hostel Gallo d’Oro was […]

The Country Between Rome and Florence

Countryside between Rome and Florence

Scenes from the train ride to my final destination last February: . . . . . Details: Departure station: Roma Termini Arrival station: Firenze S. M. Novella Train: Frecciarossa 9420 Seat: 1A (choose this seat if you don’t want anyone sitting beside you) Cost: 24.90 € (booked 90 days prior at Trenitalia) . . .